A Streetcar Named Desire

Blanche and Stella: Dependent Upon the Kindness of Self-Delusion College

By the time she speaks her famous closing line about depending on the kindness of strangers, it has become apparent that the ability of Blanche DuBois to survive in a world of men—and not just animalistic throwbacks like Stanley Kowalski, either, but men of all types of character packed into an attractive façade—is far more dependent upon on lies, deceit and an almost superhuman ability to elude reality through self-delusion. The tenuous degree of sanity still allowing Blanche DuBois to retain her freedom in public places is utterly dependent upon re-engineering the real world around her into a self-contained fantasy that—as is ultimately made clear—is so fragile it has the potential to shatter into a million pieces the moment she finally loses her last remaining grip on her ability to keep the fantasy going inside her mind no matter how ugly the reality outside gets. At some point in the future—perhaps the distant future, perhaps a future not so far away—Stella DuBois Kowalski is almost certain to undergo a similar shattering of the fantasy world she has constructed to deal with the ugly reality of surviving in the narrow world of highly restricted possibilities offered by her husband.

Clues that Stella is going to eventually...

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